downloading application - PLEASE see the sections of this page
GHF Qualifications and the Process
involved in adopting from GHF
If you have a problem downloading the application - send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
for the application in a Word format.
COLLIES VS.BORDER COLLIE MIXES
The popularity of the movie, Babe, and
the agility shows on Animal Planet, have created a desire for many, many
people to want a Border Collie as a pet. So very often, our
experience has been that children are driving this desire or some other
rationale for having 'the smartest dog'.
|| While we encourage everyone
to consider this breed, we also caution everyone on their traits.
This is a high intensity, brilliant dog capable of outthinking people,
creating havoc and challenging you to no end. They are not couch
potatoes, content to wait until you come home. They offer an
unparalleled human/dog experience or a nightmare. This is especially
true of a young Border Collie.
| If you're heart is set on a Border
Collie and your lifestyle doesn't match the intensity of a young dog, then
please consider one age 5 and up...these are more like other dogs you've
known. The intensity is lessened to a more manageable level, albeit
still no couch potato.
|In contrast to the purebred, we have
found that Border Collie mixes are often ideal. The dog is smarter
than the norm, eager to learn and very, very alert but NOT as intense and
with less interest in working, herding or nipping heels. For many,
many people, this is perfect.
| We'd encourage you to seriously look
at your lifestyle and evaluate what blends together best. A
highly intelligent, easy-going, people friendly dog is what most people
really want - the bc mix- not an intense, maniacal, highly focused,
over demanding dog - the purebred.
We are happy to discuss your situation
and the appropriate match for you since each dog requires something
different. However, we have specific criteria that we consider to be
ideal for border collies or border collie mixes. Please understand
that in our experience, we feel this profile offers an incredibly
satisfying life to a rescue dog. Their life prior to a new home, has
often been full of neglect whether it be in time or emotion and we feel
it's our role to give them much, much more than what they've previously
experienced. There are exceptions to this list but by and large, we
believe this breed thrives under these conditions.
ONLY ADOPT INTO THE NORTHEAST
(NY, NJ, VT, MA, PA, DE, MD, RI, CT, NH, ME, VA & SE Canada)
1) Fencing is required -
invisible fencing is fine. Border Collies need to run freely and do
not do well in small outdoor pens, tied out or roaming freely where they
often chase cars, deer and/ or children on bikes, all of which have been
reasons for dogs to be relinquished into rescue. They do best on at
least one acre where they can actively race around and engage in
activities such as frisbee or ball chasing. If yards are smaller,
then other free run locations need to be available.
2) Children must be 7 or older.
Border Collies do not generally mix well with young children.
Contrary to some popular perspectives that they make excellent family
pets, they do NOT. They are highly intelligent and do not understand
why anyone pokes them in the eye, pulls their tails, throws things at them
or any of the other assorted actions children unknowingly take.
Many, many, many dogs enter rescue due to nipping, growling and snarling
in these situations. Children 7 and older have a more solid respect
which the dogs respond very well to.
THERE ARE NO EXCEPTIONS TO
THE POLICY OF ADOPTING TO HOMES
WITH CHILDREN UNDER 7...WE DO NOT DO THIS ANY
After two biting incidents with perfectly
trustworthy dogs, we no longer are willing to take this risk under any
circumstances. If your child is 6, then a puppy could be considered
but no adoptions with children under 7 otherwise. Dogs perceive
small children as other dogs, not humans with any authority, so when any
issue arises, the dog will respond just as they would to make another dog
go away...growl, nip or bite. Once a child is old enough to have
some authority, the dog can better understand
the alpha orientation needed
to create safe relationships.
And, no matter how attentive a parent
can be, there is no way to
continually monitor children with the vigilance
that is necessary.
3) Not left alone more than 4 hours,
unless with another dog. Border Collies are bred to bond with
someone so being left alone for 8 - 10 hours a day deprives them of the
stimulation mentally, physically and emotionally that they need. The
requirement for exercise and interaction is intense which leads many
professionals to relinquish dogs to rescue because 'they just don't have
time for them and what they need. While many working people are
excellent caretakers of dogs, we've found that the rescue dogs flourish
when they can have companionship at a level they've never had. The
dogs bond deeply and they can blossom into stable, confident dogs.
4) Border Collie experience preferred:
If someone has experience with the demanding nature of the breed, they are
given preference over someone who does not. The reason being that
until you experience the energy levels of these dogs, it's hard to clearly
understand what's required. We want to place dogs into homes ONCE,
not have them bounce back because they are being a Border Collie for
someone who discovers this dog is 'just too much to handle'. On the
other hand, many of the Border Collie mixes are perfect choices for people
who want a smart dog but not necessarily an intense dog. The mix,
whether it be Labrador, retriever or whatever, tends to 'cut' the
intensity a bit and allow for a more manageable dog.
at Glen Highland Farm
The adoption process is designed to match
appropriate homes with appropriate dogs. While many dogs may be
attractive to the eye, we are very careful to understand the lifestyle of
each adopter since we clearly understand the individual dogs in our care
and not all border collies are the same.
For example, we have many dogs that will
not tolerate a quiet life, yet others that will thrive on it. They
are as individual as people in their personalities so we strive for the
ideal life for them.
There are four steps in the process:
1) Fill out an application via online or
fax, we pre qualify you via phone. A reference check with be
conducted and we'll have a conversation about dogs of interest as well as
dogs we'd suggest fit best. Questions you might have would be
answered during this call.
2) Visit with the dog(s), all family members
should participate, including any other dogs. (Adoptions
are by appointment only. We welcome visitors (non-adopters) to
the Farm but also by appointment only.)
3) The adoption then occurs. A
contract is signed which stipulates that any time during the dog's life,
we will take the dog back if you cannot keep them.
4) Follow-up is an important part of a
successful adoption and we want to be a resource to help solve issues or
questions as they arise, so there are periodic
check-ins to say hello.
Highland Farm, each and All records of treatments and associated
costs are provided to each adopter, as well as the necessary medical forms
for the vet. The adoption fee for each dog is $325 which goes toward
the costs of all the dogs cared for at Glen Highland Farm.
We are a
non-profit, funded purely through donations and adoption fees.
YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES?
People often ask
"will they be approved to adopt a dog from the Farm"? So,
this is written to help answer that question.
If you come to
adopt with an open heart to join hearts with another being and share a
life with them, then possibly you’ll find your canine friend........
If you come to
adopt expecting the perfect dog with no issues, then you will not be as
likely to find your canine friend.
The dogs in rescue,
by and large, are here because someone else has given up on them. For
whatever reason, through their own fault or not, they are abandoned.
Sometimes they have fear issues; sometimes they have never lived a normal
loving life; and sometimes they are just fine and need another home
because of problems their people are facing. Regardless of why they land
at the Farm, they need you to be committed in the right way.
Do not come to
adopt if you don't expect to put time and energy and money into working
with a rescue dog. You will most likely need to hire a trainer. And, you
will most likely endure problems in the beginning as the dog adjusts to a
totally new life. Those problems might be chewing, peeing, pooping,
barking, hiding or even growling. Change is not always easy for dogs. It
is important to have patience and tolerance for understanding life from
their perspective. They will not be perfect. Neither are you when you do
something new. There also may be medical issues that we cannot see
which means you'll spend money you didn't expect to spend. You are not
buying a new car, you are rescuing a living, breathing dog that needs
care. All of us at the Farm have given our hearts, souls and wallets to
insure these dogs leave healthy, happy and ready for a new life but, there
are no guarantees. If you want perfect hips, perfect eyes and no problems,
go to a breeder who checks all this out.
If you come to
adopt understanding that the love in the hearts of these dogs is
tremendous and unparalleled when you connect with them, then you
have the right perspective. If you can imagine what it feels like to be
misunderstood your whole life, not wanted and not cared for properly, then
imagine what it is like for someone to finally care enough to put the time
into giving you what you need. That is why rescue dogs bond so deeply and
so strongly when they find their person. Finally, someone understands who
they are and what they are here to give to people.
Rescue is really
about YOU being rescued. About YOU digging deeper into your heart to work
through whatever comes up, to unconditionally love a dog who is willing to
unconditionally love you. If we all have a chance in life to truly
experience the joy of real love between two beings, then possibly the
human race has a chance to be rescued. It takes effort and hard work
sometimes, to find real joy. That is what we are looking for in
adopters who come to the Farm: people who are here for the right
|MEET TIGGER -
our test cat
|As we stated in our adoption
procedures, we always test rescue dogs with a cat in order to insure they
will join a new family safely, without harming the resident cat(s).
We've had fabulous luck - basically 100% - in our judgments thanks to our
infamous test cat - Tigger.
You can see Tigger here in action, AFTER, a
long bout of testing 8 dogs...he's ravenous for his treat!
|Tigger is a rescue cat who actually likes border collies, not those that chase him
or bother him, but those that entertain him with all their continuous
activities - herding, crouching, tug games, etc. etc. etc - he just loves
to watch their nonsense! So, after years of watching this breed,
he's a very good judge of character!
Here's how it works - Tigger hangs out in
our adoption office, waiting for the dogs to arrive. He, by the way,
is consulted on this 'job' of his to insure that this is what he wants to
do. So far, he's never said no. So, he waits in the adoption
office, usually up on the window sill. The dog enters on leash and
one of three things usually happens.
1 - they notice him and
are very curious to see 'what' he is
2 - they do notice him but seem
3 - they notice him and are off to the races in
pursuit (even though he hasn't even moved!)
After the initial
entrance test, they are led over to Tigger where the action intensifies or
doesn't, whatever the case may be. Tigger, by the way, is clearly in
charge here, completely aware of whether his life is in danger or not.
When he purrs, it's quite obvious he's happy as can be, meeting another
border collie. Most of the time when he purrs, he then proceeds to
nudge the dog, seemingly making friends. Obviously, this means the
dog passed the test.
So, for those of you who wondered how we can
be sure, or at least, fairly sure.
Here's what it's like when it
The dog strongly pulls toward Tigger...the hair
on his back goes up...the dog is getting closer....he bolts...very
familiar scene for a dog that is way too interested in cats for our taste.
The other scenario goes like this: The dog smells everything in the
room and discovers Tigger, begins smelling intently and checking him out.
Tigger (the big difference) doesn't seem bothered at all, doesn't move and
is still content. This is a border collie that is curious (many are)
and with supervision, will be just fine. However, that doesn't mean that he/she won't
chase the cat when they move, it just means they don't have heavy prey
drive to hurt the cat.
The last situation is this: Dog enters;
Tigger is calm, watching the dog, purring and interested, yet the dog actually avoids
Tigger, completely intimidated.
That's obviously a great border collie to go with cats.
Our beloved Tigger has met 100's of border collies and border collie mixes and we are forever grateful for his
enduring spirit in meeting these characters...thank goodness Tigger is
such a good sport!